It's me again. Sorry I took so long to post this journal, but I wanted to take some time in order to defuse, and to think about the whole situation. Truth is, I'm still mad at DeviantArt. Let me explain why: I'll try and describe everything from the start, so that newcomers can understand what's going on.
A couple of months back I wrote an Open Letter to DeviantArt. You can read it over HERE
In it, I openly asked why my artwork was being targeted and removed from the website, even after I marked it as NSFW. The pose of the character I had drawn was suggestive, but did not include a sexual act. Long story short, a DA mod apologized in the comments after the post gained a bit of traction (previous attempts to contact someone in charge in private had proven fruitless), and the artwork was put back up. It suffered quite a lot from not being visible during the first hours it was uploaded, and now lies within the depths of my gallery.
I thought the situation had been solved, and that me and DA were back on good terms. Then, about a week ago, I uploaded another Deviation, and it probably did not sit well with someone in the Modding team, as it was deleted almost instantly. This time, it was because the character I drew was a minor in a “nude, erotic or sexually compromising fashion”. You can check out the picture in question on my Twitter
. I am, of course, completely in disagreeance with this decision, as I strongly believe that the photo did not infringe the user terms in any way whatsoever. Only by comparing my submission to popular artworks of the same character
already on the platform makes me raise an eyebrow. Let me just remind you that the character in question was written as flirtatious and even naked in the first scenes of the manga and the anime as a story driving element. There was nothing sexual in the situation. HERE
some screenshots from the manga.
But then again, I concede that you may be right. YOU may see the sexual nature of the picture. I, for one, did not. I did not intend to excite pedophiles. The drawing portrays a strong and mature woman, looking confident. But you decided to remove it. That's ok.
But the final straw was just a few days ago. I uploaded MY edited version of MY artwork, in which I had purposely changed every detail that recalled the character that they had deemed “underage”, and stated it was MY creation, as it should be. MY OC, my OC of LEGAL AGE. You don't get to decide whether she's a minor, when, as I stated in the description of that same submission, she obviously is NOT. DeviantArt went ahead and removed the image for the exact same reason it removed the previous one, when it had absolutely no right to do so.
Now, the first image, I could understand. We could go on and on about how the pose was non sexual, how the character was depicted in the same way it is within the original content, how the body looks more like one of a grown woman than one of a 16 year old... But, ultimately, it was your legitimate decision. Which I don't agree with.
But the second drawing, DA mods has absolutely no right to remove or touch. This is a violation of my rights as an artists, and I feel like I am being targeted and censored.
I'm through with dealing with all of this. Trying to dialogue nicely gets us nowhere. Call me a conspiracy theorist, but I am almost sure that there is someone with too much modding power, somewhere, sitting behind a computer that gets to arbitrarily decide what stays up. And my content is targeted because this person or these people don't like what I draw.
Even when I try to abide to your rules, you censor me. DeviantArt, I'm not the one you should go after. Stop trying to battle me only because I am among the more popular artists on the website. Only because I get more exposure and more reports, it does not mean that I should be judged differently from everybody else.
Keep doing this and soon my patience, as well as the patience of many other artists, will run out. I know many of you already suffered by this type of treatment, but I didn’t know how bad it was until it got me too. Some artists already left and others try their best not to get banned from the platform because someone got tired of their art.
I wish I could speak for all of us when I say that you, Deviantart, should figure out a decent way to judge what gets to stay up. Because either all of it stays up, or all of it goes down. And if only a fraction of it keeps getting put down, I might as well not upload here the first place!
I personally make a living through art, and sinking time and effort into a website that keeps removing my pieces one by one does not pay my bills at the end of the month. The only thing that keeps me posting over here are the people who follow me and support me. If you got to the end of this post, and you're one of these people... Thank you. But please, please, follow me on other social media channels. I don't know if I want to keep posting here, if Deviantart keeps deleting pictures without fair moderation. All of this while much worse and unregulated content gets to stay up.
Thank you for reading up until the very end. I had to get this weight of my chest.
Don't forget to share your thoughts and your own misadventures in the comments! Also share the journal with the community if you feel the same way about the unfairness of Deviantart.
Have a good day, and stay awesome!P.S.
In light of other recent events that have happened with other (popular) websites, heed this warning. Look at what's going on with Tumblr. Take a look at how they are alienating half of their userbase, removing the content they cultivated for the past decade. DeviantArt, don't go down this route of self destruction. And everyone, please, help stop this from happening. We all know someone that was affected.
The name of this website is DeviantArt. And I believe that a little bit of defiance, and deviance, is always necessary to create art. Please stop these people from imposing boundaries to our creativity (or a big part of the community will implode on itself and leave, as it is doing on Tumblr/other platforms).